The best example of this is Flying Fish’s Exit 9 Hoppy Scarlet Ale (Named after Rutgers)–now renamed Red Fish. It was exactly what I described. A ton of hops, with a nice syrupy sweetness mixed in. So, yeah, I pretty much expect every Red IPA to be like that.
Unfortunately not all of them are. They’re usually not too hoppy, and very malty, with leads to a bready dry taste. In fact, for a while I gave up on buying them.
But, I’m on a Green Flash kick, so I decided to try this one. The odor is hops, pure hop goodness. In fact, when I smelt it, I forgot I was drinking a Red IPA and thought it was a West Coast IPA. That made me extremely optimistic. Maybe I’d get another beer to match with Red Fish.
First sip: Hops… Hops followed by caramel. The malt is there, the bread is there, but it’s faint. No instead, it’s like eating a hop covered in caramel. Sticky, gooey, sweet. Delicious. It’s not a thin beer either. It’s heavy when it’s in your mouth.
It’s going to take me a while to finish this one. But that’s a good thing.
If I can’t get me some Red Fish, I’ll gladly be a Hop Head Red….